Monday, March 3, 2014

Consensus NBA Power Rankings, Week 19

In a tanking success story, the Philadelphia 76ers bring a league-worse 14-game losing streak into Week 19 of the NBA season.

Considering they will face Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and the Thunder in their next matchup, it almost certainly means their losing streak will be extended to (at least) 15 games.

That would put them only five games behind their worst-ever losing streak of 20 games set back in 1973.

After they play the Thunder on Tuesday, the Sixers face three teams with losing records: Jazz (21-38), Knicks (21-39)and Kings (20-39).

If they lose those three games and extend their losing streak to 18, however, it's going to be an uphill battle to avoid setting a new franchise-record losing streak as they will face the Pacers twice as well as the Grizzlies.

While there hasn't been much to celebrate except for the possibility of Joel Embiid, Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker coming to town in June (see my mock draft here), the team and their fans got a chance to celebrate Allen Iverson recently.

The Sixers retired AI's No. 3 on Friday night:

As a Sixers fan, my favorite Iverson moment (or moments, plural, since it was a game) was Game 1 of the 2001 NBA Finals when AI and the Sixers upset Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant and the Lakers. (Unfortunately, the Sixers got swept from there, but they were the only team to beat the Lakers during that postseason run.)

Perhaps, they needed a little more practice:

Pound for pound, Iverson was one of the toughest, most electric players to ever play the game.

While his critics will argue that he never met a shot he didn't like, Iverson ranks 26th on the all-time scoring list, but he is seventh all-time in points per game (26.66). The only players with more points per game than AI are Michael Jordan (30.12), Wilt Chamberlain (30.07), LeBron James (27.51), Elgin Baylor (27.36), Kevin Durant (27.15) and Jerry West (27.03).

In addition, Iverson is tied with John Stockton for eighth all-time in steals per game (2.17).

- See this week's full 2013-14 NBA Power Rankings

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